Annual Charity 2019
Faith to Faithless was started in mid-2015 by Imtiaz Shams and Aliyah Saleem. In January 2017 it came under the umbrella of Humanists UK with whom they have developed a support programme for so-called ‘apostates’ and those who leave high-control religions e.g. ex-Muslims, ex-Mormons, ex-Plymouth Brethren, ex-Jehovah’s Witnesses, and various others who have suffered after leaving their religion behind.
The service is led by apostates themselves, who have knowledge and experiences of apostate communities facing serious and systemic issues. These issues range from emotional and physical abuse from family members, friends, and peers in their community through to homelessness, shunning, ‘honour-based’ abuse and killings, and systemic failures by statutory organisations to support apostates.
Faith to Faithless also engages in activities in two other areas of work: they provide a platform for apostate voices to be heard and raise awareness of the issues that apostates face so that others don’t suffer in the same ways, ensuring they have built trust within the apostate community. They do this both online, and through speaker and panel events that are open to the public. They train statutory and support organisations like police, social services, and mental health organisations to better understand the issues apostates face, and the sorts of policy and practice implications this might have for the organisation.
Currently there are no peer support groups in the North East but Faith to Faithless receives cries for help from people living in the North East. People from a variety of religious upbringings, from Muslims to Jehovah Witnesses’, and their stories are just as bad, just as abusive, as stories they hear from London, Birmingham, or Bradford. Contact is made via social media, where advice and signposting are provided, and they direct them to supportive social groups.
Faith to Faithless would like to start peer support groups in the North East, and they want to train local service agencies (like the police and social services) to be better equipped to safeguard these people. Money raised by North East Humanists will help make this possible.
Please contact us for details on how to make donations to Faith to Faithless on our behalf.
Annual Charity 2018
Equal Arts are a leading creative ageing charity supporting older people in Newcastle, Gateshead and across the UK.
They work to improve the lives of older people through creativity and arts activities around the North East, providing creative opportunities to help improve people’s wellbeing.
They strongly believe in the health benefits of the arts and support care staff and artists to deliver musical, visual and movement-based creative activities with active older people and those living with dementia
Annual Charity 2017
The MS Society is a community of people living with MS, scientists, campaigners, volunteers and fundraisers.
They understand what life’s like with MS, and they support each other through the highs, lows and everything in between.